Image of the Day: Orangutans’ Future Goes Up in Smoke

This orangutan is from the island of Sumatra in Indonesia. According to the IUCN Red List, Sumatran orangutans are critically endangered with only 7,000 individuals remaining in the wild. Rapid clearing of the Sumatran jungles to make way for palm oil plantations is the main cause of the declining orangutan populations.

One of the few populations left on the island, which consists of 200 individuals, a mere 7 percent of its historical size, may soon be caught in the blazes being used to clear areas of the Tripa peat swamp forest in Sumatra. According to the Guardian, some of the areas being burned “have not been permitted for clearing.”

While the deforestation occurring in Indonesia certainly affects the orangutan, it also has an impact on carbon emissions. If emissions from the deforestation are taken into account when determining national carbon emissions, Indonesia is the third largest emitter in the world.

Credit: netpoette/Changing times